University of Gävle part of major EU project for the environment

2018-11-26 

In their research programme Horizon 2020, the EU invests 50 million SEK to reduce the use of fossil fuels in a programme involving eight countries in Europe, and the University of Gävle with their cutting-edge research on solar power technology is the only participating university in Sweden.

The University’s research building with its lab and its three workshops is equipped with solar collectors.

The University’s research building with its lab and its three workshops is equipped with solar collectors.

A unique solar collector

A solar collector which produces both electricity and heat

A solar collector which produces both electricity and heat

The University focuses on a hybrid system, in which solar cells are fitted onto an absorber with a cooling system, and hybrid solar collectors combining solar cells and solar thermal collectors. This system enables the hybrid to produce both electricity and heat.

“The hybrid, which we have developed for 15 years and that is now manufactured by Solarus, is unique in the sense that it produces both electricity and heat simultaneously. The main point is that more energy is produced per solar cell unit area,” says Björn Karlsson, professor in energy systems, who developed the solar cell hybrid from the beginning.

Research at the forefront at the University

Horizon 2020 is a major EU framework programme for research and innovation. The object of the current project is to replace fossil fuels by building new energy systems for buildings based on a new type of magnetic heat pump, while using a so-called hybrid solar power collector that generates both electricity and heat.

“Horizon 2020 is the largest EU programme for research and innovation and this proves that our research is at the forefront and of high quality,” Ulf Larsson, PhD in energy systems at the University of Gävle, tells us.

Intelligent buildings in which we choose energy sources

The solar cell system has a unique quality as it can be installed in buildings and reduce the amount of energy that must be bought. The aim is that citizens should be able to choose energy source and choose time of day via a panel when charging their electric vehicles, for instance.

“This is the future; citizens make active choices via a panel at home and the user can see exactly what different choices will cost in environmental impact,” Ulf Larsson says.

“In Sweden today, only a small part of our energy comes from solar power systems. However, the potential is great, and it is valuable for us that our solar energy activities become widely known both when it comes to research and education,” Björn Karlsson points out.

Reesbe and Solarus

The industrial post-graduate school Reesbe (Resource-efficient Energy Systems in the Built Environment) is run by the University of Gävle in collaboration with Dalarna University and Mälardalen University. Today, the University has 20 externally employed doctoral students in Reesbe.

Solarus, which manufactures the solar collector hybrid, is a spin-off of the Swedish Vattenfall and it has developed the solar collector hybrid. Through the PhD student João Gomes, Solarus carries out research together with the University of Gävle and Björn O Karlsson is João Gomes’ principal supervisor.

“Solarus participates in the EU programme as well, and externally employed doctoral student João Gomes is employed by Solarus. Through the PhD student, Solarus carries out research with the University,” Ulf Larsson explains.

 

For more information, please contact:
Björn Karlsson, professor in energy systems at the University of Gävle
Phone: 076-286 52 49
E-mail: bjorn.o.karlsson@hig.se

Ulf Larsson, PhD in energy systems, head of Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering at the University of Gävle
Phone: 070-648 79 23
E-mai: ulf.larsson@hig.se

João Gomes, externally employed doctoral student at the University of Gävle and Research director at Solarus Supower Sweden AB
phone: 070-509 47 35
E-mail: Joao.Santos.Gomes@hig.se

 

Text:Douglas Öhrbom

Published by: Douglas Öhrbom Page responsible: Veronica Liljeroth Updated: 2018-11-26
Högskolan i Gävle
www.hig.se
Box 801 76 GÄVLE
026-64 85 00 (växel)